UC Merced is taking the first steps in creating a formal intercollegiate athletic program. The university expects to have a plan of action in place next year.
The Chancellor's Blue Ribbon Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics will meet on campus today with consultants -- Cedric Dempsey and Ted Leland -- hired by the university.
Dempsey served as president of the National Collegiate Athletic Association from 1994 to 2003. Leland was the athletic director at Stanford from 1991 to 2005.
The commission, includes Los Angeles Galaxy coach and former soccer player Cobi Jones, athletic administrators and former student athletes.